Gigabyte 965P-DS3P rev 2.Zero motherboard assessment

Enthusiasts really shape the computer market and have a greater impact on how products are designed than they are likely to think.

Less than a decade ago, it was quite a task to find a good overclocking motherboard that is capable of getting every little bit out of a processor. At that time, the big motherboard manufacturer Gigabyte was probably the last name you would think of for optimization and overclocking functions, as it offered no support in this regard. At the time, Abit was a great advocate of overclocking, so the company quickly built a reputation. others should follow.

A lot has changed since the late 1990s and overclocking has become a much more general resource. Gigabyte, which used to be one of the anti-overclocking manufacturers, is now developing some of the best overclocking boards. And I think this also applies in part to other large companies such as Asus and MSI.

With the affordable and popular Gigabyte 965P-DS3, for example, for around $ 150, this motherboard can easily take a Core 2 Duo E6300 processor from 1.86 GHz to 3.50 GHz without compromising stability. Granted, early versions of the 965P-DS3 had a lot of bugs, but Gigabyte seems to have ironed out most of them.

The second version of the 965P-DS3 (version 2.0) included some nice improvements, including a 100% solid capacitor design for more stability when overclocking. The 965P-DS3 (version 2.0) was one of the largest Intel LGA775 overclocking motherboards available and, at $ 150, was also one of the cheaper ones. The only problem was that many of the features of the more expensive 965P-DQ6 were missing, which is retailing for just over $ 200.

Features such as ATI CrossFire technology were not supported at all by the 965P-DS3 (version 2.0). In addition, there was no RAID support for six of the eight SATAII ports found on the card, and there was no Firewire support. Therefore, it seemed obvious that Gigabyte had to meet its customers halfway, and with the new 965P-DS3P (version 2.0) they have the "P" standard for "Pro". This version costs around $ 170 and offers everything the 965P-DQ6 has to offer, except for the sophisticated cooling system and 12-phase power supply design.

In essence, the 965P-DS3P is a slightly cheaper alternative to the 965P-DQ6. Although cooling is nowhere near as aggressive, cost savings come into play here because the two small chipset heatsinks are much cheaper to make. The inclusion of the additional PCI Express x16 slot is important for CrossFire support. Although this port only works under x4, it supports multi-GPU technology regardless.

Affordable high-end motherboards like the 965P-DS3P, which can overclock on 500 MHz bus frequencies and beyond, will be extremely valuable as the new year progresses. This is because even cheaper Core 2 Duo processors like the E4400 and E4300 are on the move. For example, the E4300 uses the same 9-fold clock multiplier as the E6600. The difference is that the E4300 uses a much lower 800 MHz FSB and a 2 MB L2 cache. If the E4300 were to be operated with a 266 MHz FSB, it would theoretically match the E6600 for a clock rate of 2.40 GHz. On the other hand, we expect the E4300 to reach speeds above 2.40 GHz, and this will be confirmed in the near future.

Overall, the 965P-DS3P appears to be one of the best Intel P965 motherboards on the market, especially in terms of price. With a wide range of functions, including SATAII RAID, dual BIOS, dual PCI Express x16, 8-channel audio, gigabit LAN, solid capacitor design, Firewire, USB 2.0 and more. Gigabyte also claims that the 965P-DS3P is an overclocked motherboard, so of course I'm very interested in trying this with Core 2 Duo E6700 and E6300 processors.

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